Thursday, August 01, 2013

Lauren, the winner of an additional Scholarship Award, Summer 2013!

We are so happy to announce the second recipient of an additional Girls With Wings Scholarship Award: Lauren Savage!

Girls With Wings offers two scholarship opportunities twice yearly. The Private Pilot Scholarship is to help defray the cost of flight training lessons in pursuit of a private pilot certificate. This scholarship is targeting those individuals who have soloed but have not completed the Private Pilot Course. The Girls With Wings Dreams Take Flight Scholarship is designed to introduce the world of aviation to someone who would benefit from experiencing the joy of flight. The award of this scholarship is intended to fund introductory flight training to encourage achievement of a stated goal, whether in aviation or in another field of study.

We are doing something simply unprecedented this year and we are super excited to finally be able to share the news with you. We are announcing NUMEROUS awards for our summer program instead of the usual two. Why? Because we are fortunate to receive donations and membership fees that people entrust to us because they believe and support the mission of Girls With Wings. There is no need or benefit to keep cash idling in the bank when the following individuals can take flight!

Therefore we are announcing several additional awards to individuals showing great promise and dedication. We are offering them $250 to help in funding at least a small portion of their flight training.

Here is Lauren's application essay: 

It is 5:30 p.m. and the hot, dry winds of Central Texas blow across an empty runway, as I stand in the shade of a locked-up hangar. I watch anxiously as a small plane appears on the horizon, accompanied by a growing buzzing sound. The plane, a Beechcraft Bonanza, taxis up to where I’m standing and the door opens. This would be the first time I ever boarded such a small plane, and I had many mixed emotions about it. I’d wanted to fly since before I can remember, and the thought of finally getting my hands on the yoke had my mind racing. “What if I don’t love it like I thought I would?” “What if I’m not good at it?” “What if this isn’t my life calling?” Regardless of these questions, I was still excited beyond words: This is what I had wanted my entire life. As soon as I could feel the natural tug upward as the wings began generating lift on the runway, it was as if everything had fallen into place. I was supposed to be there. As the plane left the ground and trees began speeding under me, getting smaller and smaller, my hands now controlling the aircraft, I teared up. I knew that the dreams I had ever since I was a small child were no longer simply dreams. They had become a reality. That was the day aviation changed from a passionate dream to an exciting reality, a dream in which I keep on dreaming. 

This was my Young Eagles’ flight—the very beginning of my flying career. After this flight, I was completely energized. I had never felt so fulfilled and passionate. All I could think about was getting back in the air. Following my Young Eagle’s flight, I took the Sporty’s Learn to Fly Course online. I did everything I could to immerse myself in aviation knowledge and the aviation world. I have had two flight lessons since and loved every minute of them. 

Following graduation of high school, I see myself studying Political Science at the United States Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, CO. I want to be a part of their Powered Flight team and their Wings of Blue jump team. It is my dream to go to flight school upon graduating and fly the F-22. My inspiration for going to the Air Force Academy and flying the F-22 is: To study in a world-class institution with likeminded, motivated peers who adhere to high standards and possess a sense of leadership is unlike any opportunity provided elsewhere. I want to be a part of something bigger and greater than myself, serve my country and fly while doing so. 

To this day, my dream of becoming a pilot has grown to immeasurable heights. While accomplishing this, I want to serve as an inspiration for other girls who dream of flying. I want to be a mentor to help their dreams grow, because I know what that fiery passion to fly feels like. I would be honored to advocate flying for girls at Girls With Wings. That is why I co-founded an aviation club at my high school. I want to be able to share my love for aviation with other students, specifically girls, who previously may not have had the opportunity or interest in flying. As class president, I am eager to get as many students involved as possible, because I believe flying is an exhilarating experience that everyone needs to experience. 

I am a hard worker at school, taking all the honors and Pre-AP classes offered at my level. I am president of several clubs and organizations, and I spend a lot of time outside of school volunteering at my church and the homeless shelter as well as running varsity cross country and track. This year, I was awarded several leadership conference opportunities by my school, which I was able to attend. I have been able to maintain a steady 4.42 GPA and remain on the Principal’s List. Currently, I am financially unable to fly due to recent family circumstances and a tight budget. Every penny I make goes toward saving up for flying. I have not yet soloed, but wish to in the coming months. My current goal is to obtain my Private Pilot’s license. This scholarship would be used toward the cost of training until I solo at Fort Worth Meacham International Airport in Fort Worth, Texas. Through receiving this scholarship, with the help of Girls With Wings, this would be the first step, the beginning, of a girl from Texas’ dreams to become a fighter pilot in the United States Air Force.

We're pretty sure you'll do it, Lauren. Aim High! We look forward to hearing about your training.

See the details of the 2014 Scholarship program starting January 1st, 2014.

Please note that the scholarships are funded by donations - so we need contributions from people like YOU to keep our program running. We always have way more deserving applicants than funds. Visit our donation page to help.

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